I don't know about you, but I feel like I'm running a marathon every morning. I roll out of bed, head to the gym for a 45-minute workout, come back and shower, pack lunches, run my son to the school bus, hop on a crowded subway, and fight midtown pedestrian traffic to the office. And then once I'm there, I write seven blog posts for The Stir. Needless to say, I need some energy to do this. ENERGY.
The morning workout helps, but getting a solid breakfast matters even more. Most of the time I try to eat something with lots of protein and complex carbs -- yes, I said it, CARBS. And I avoid anything too sugary or refined. Here are my favorite easy, high-energy breakfasts.
1. Steel-cut oats. Also called Irish oats, these are whole-grain inner kernel of oats. They give you a porridge with a rougher, non-gluey texture I love. And depending on the brand you get, they should be gluten-free, for those of you watching for that. I ate oatmeal made from steel-cut oats almost every weekday this winter, with just a little bit of maple syrup and some blueberries. Steel-cut oats take about 20-30 minutes to cook, so I'll start them before my shower. But you can also soak them overnight for fast cooking.
2. Granola with yogurt. When it gets warm, I switch to granola with yogurt. I like a crunchy, not-too-sweet granola with nuts -- my favorite is Bread Alone's apricot and pistachio. I'll have it with plain, full-fat yogurt. I know I'm kind of a weirdo, but I'll take full fat over flavored any day.
3. Brown rice or quinoa with poached egg. If I'm working from home, I'll sometimes make time for this breakfast. I'll cook some nutty, short-grain brown rice or some red quinoa and add a couple of eggs in the last few minutes of cooking with a little extra water. Then I'll take my poached egg and rice and add some soy sauce, sriracha, crumbled nori, and sesame or olive oil. It gives me a rush.
4. Flax seed waffles. My one breakfast convenience food (frozen), although I feed it to my son more often than to myself. I look for whole-grain, low-sugar waffles with omega-rich flax seeds, and then I slather them with butter.
5. Peanut butter toast. Or almond butter! I toast a slice of my favorite, whole-grain bread and spread a nice, thick layer of peanut butter on it. Sometimes I add sliced bananas.
Coffee with whole milk. This is not a stand-alone breakfast. This is what I drink to wash it all down. But that extra bit of protein, vitamins, and yes, fat help keep me going after the caffeine boost fades.
What's your best, high-energy breakfast?
Image via thebittenword.com/Flickr